Garden Notes—April

I’ve been spending a lot of time in the garden over the last few weeks. This will be my third year in this house and I’m finally turning my attention to the rest of the yard and not just focusing on the backyard. I’m also trying to make sure the things I’ve done in the backyard are surviving. For my own remembering I decided to write some posts on this, hopefully monthly through the normal growing season, so I can look back on what worked and what didn’t.

We’re already very warm here, today it’s supposed to be at or above 80 degrees, and it’s dry. That’s not good. I’m crossing everything that we get a bit of rain before the true dry summer weather hits, but we’ll see what happens. The entire west needs it. This is the earliest I’ve used the irrigation system, which is worrying.

I’ve worked a lot on the west side of our yard, it gets very hot sun and the heat bouncing back off the house as well, so it’s a difficult area. This year I took out 5 bushes that weren’t doing well and I don’t think they were a good fit and I’ve put in two shasta daisies for some blooms as they’re drought tolerant and deer resistant. We don’t spend time on that side of the house and I don’t want to put a lot of water into plants there, so I’m making it look OK, but it won’t be a showstopper. With water shortages becoming the new normal, I’m trying to be mindful.

In the backyard I’ve replaced two bushes and added in two more lilacs. The ones we put in two years ago are doing very well and will be blooming soon, and since I love the spring color I added more. I also have two packs of sunflower seeds, it’s a bit too early to put them in, but we’re gonna have even more sunflowers this summer and I’m excited, I love them.

I’ve got snap peas coming up in one of the raised beds. I got them in a bit late, but they seem to be doing fine. Even though we’re having warm days, our nights are still quite cool which they like, so here’s hoping we have some snap peas in the coming months. In really exciting news, yesterday I saw blossoms on my, still tiny, blueberry bushes. I put these in last year as very small starts and they are doing well and survived the winter, so we may get a few berries this summer!

My plan for the veggie garden is done and I have seeds for mini cukes that I can plant next month and tomato and pepper starts are due to arrive next month as well. I learned a lot last year, so hopefully things will go better this year, especially with the peppers.

The final big project that is almost done is getting all the bark mulch away from the house before fire season. I only have two more spots left! Fingers crossed we don’t have a fire, but I’m doing my part to “harden our home” as they call it. Fire protection has been the talk of my neighborhood this year after last fall and I wish I believed that doing a lot of things would help, but I honestly feel like it’s a bit of luck of the draw, we’ll see.

Next month will be getting veggies and herbs in and annuals in pots for more color around the patio. Then I can relax and go into maintenance mode.